Artivistic Fieldwork IJDCET vol.1 no.2-3
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 Artivistic Fieldwork IJDCET vol.1 no.2-3
- Publication date
- Artivistic Fieldwork, Doctoral abstract, 2008, agryfp, participatory platforms, socially-engaged arts, rules for radicals
This entry shares Andrew Gryf Paterson's article 'Artivistic Fieldwork: participatory platforms, devised events, and socially-engaged art storymaking' that was written as an abstract for International Journal of Digital Culture, and Electronic Tourism, volume 1, nos 2-3. See: https://www.inderscienceonline.com/doi/abs/10.1504/IJDCET.2008.021413
The 1st draft of file (Author's Original) was dated 5th February 2008, which included a reference to Saul Alinsky's 'Rules for Radicals: A pragmatic primer for realistic radicals' (1971). However this sentence did not make it into the revised draft 17th August 2008, despite being maintained in the bibliography. See pre-print drafts of abstract as open documents.
Hence, in sharing the 3 versions of this abstract, which no longer holds as valid to final doctoral thesis abstract, illustrates an edit and format process.
Extract from 1st draft:
"As a research process, it has been strongly influenced by my practice as an artist-organiser and cultural producer. I have organised pedagogical workshops, community actions, performative events, media art installations, and cultural productions. I understand these roles to have operated inbetween the fields of media/network/environmental activism; participatory, site-specific and socially-engaged arts (Kester 2004).
Over variable time-periods, my personal and remote experiences with others - as co-producers, co-artists, collaborators, citizens, young people and students – have influenced my approach and personal intervention or agency. These persons have contributed to my understanding of the material, approaches, and knowledge production ‘in the ‘field’, ‘on-site’. This understanding encourages me to describe these engagements loosely as ‘fieldwork’, manifested in a series of artistic and/or activist projects, which are progressively informed by each other.
'Artivistic' is a borrowed term  which suggests the interplay of art and activist practices, and my approach to engagement, broadly characterised as 'creative imagineering' of other possible worlds.
From an 'artivistic' perspective, my 'fieldwork actions' are intended to respect pre-existing tangible and intangible cultural heritage, promote social change and awareness of contextual and environmental issues; essentially engaging for a progressive politic (Duncombe 2007). I engage with a belief that my intervention has an affect for better (or worse sometimes), not only on myself and others, but also on the focus of my or any others’ attention.
In the pragmatic sense, I have ‘learned-through-doing’, and ‘making-do’ with what I or others already have or know (Alinsky 1971).
This fieldwork is emboldened with intellectual support from interaction/media design (Krippendorf 2006), performance/archaeaology hybridity (Pearson 2006), archaeologies of the contemporary past (Buchli & Lucas 2001), indigenous culture (Harvey 2006), and reflective ethnography (Geertz 1983).
Such readings remind and reinforce that many sites of investigation are themselves, a variable mix of material and intangible, historical and contested spaces. Ones where self-organised and designated structures have been applied with ‘grassroots’ and ‘authorised’ network support; where direct and mediated experiences have been made in the process; where open, free, privatised, commercial, cultural, imperial, and corporate influences are and have been historically applied.
Furthermore, with self-awareness of my involved role, at/on these sites I have often engaged with the mediating structures and mediating persons present, with which (and with whom) facillitate entry to those spaces, and the networks which inter-connect and organise them (Rossiter 2006). Hence, my relation to those structures, spaces and networks, are often one of self- or another’s- appropriation or colonisation of the platform or system. The exploitation of the power within networks is kept in mind (Galloway & Thacker 2007).
With all of the above considered, this work aims to build upon and develop the concept of the “Art Platform” (Goryunova 2007) into one which transfers back and forth between virtual-online and material-physical environments. As such it is promoted to be part of a pedagogical and conceptual toolkit that links art (and activism) with environmental awareness, expanding the scope to include also social, urban and virtual environments.
The participatory arts and oral history projects enacted by this author are concerned with the sustainance of the tangible and cultural heritage on-site, inviting other people and potential stakeholders into the process. Reflective and critical attention is weighted upon the resultant encounters: actual, material and situated places, involving direct engagement with particularities – specific people, communities, localities, sites – with the material and mediated remains of activity.
How can engagements be made in a socially responsible way? What are useful methods and conceptual tools to communicate the aesthetics of involvement, representation, and sustainability of such systems? How is individual presence represented in collective expressions which often have an intangible form or outcome? How may practice-led research be applied in network, media, and environmental activist processes?
What is left behind as digital, material and ephemeral residue of ‘being t/here’ is a consistant concern, including the stories which are made in the process."
 “Artivistic emerges out of the proposition that not only artists talk about art, academics about theory, and activists about activism”. Montreal, Canada, October 2007. http://artivistic.org/
Alinsky, Saul D. (1971). Rules for Radicals: a pragmatic primer for realistic radicals. Vintage Books, New York.
Buchli, Victor & Lucas, Gavin eds. (2001). Archaeologies of the Contemporary Past. Routledge Press, London.
Duncombe, Stephen (2007). Dream: re-imagining progressive politics in an age of fantasy. The New Press, New York.
Galloway, Alexander & Thacker, Eugene (2007), The Exploit: a theory of networks, University of Minnesota Press.
Geertz, Clifford (1983). Local Knowledge: Further Essays in Interpretive Anthropology. Basic Books 2000.
Harvey, Graham (2006). Animism: respecting the living world. Columbia University Press.
Kester, Grant (2004). Conversation Pieces: community and communication in modern art, University of California Press.
Krippendorff, Klaus (2006). The Semantic Turn. Boca Raton, FL: CRC press.
Goryunova, Olga (2007). Art Platforms: the constitution of cultural and artistic currents on the internet. DA Thesis, University of Art and Design, Helsinki. In Press.
Mike Pearson (2006). In Comes I: performance, memory and landscape. University of Exeter Press.
Rossiter, Ned (2006). Organised Networks: media theory, creative labour, new institutions. Institute of Network Cultures NAI, Rotterdam.
Note: This sharing of published article follows the author-publisher's copyright holding in some aspects: "Accepted Manuscript: Internally sharing the Accepted Manuscript within their research collaboration groups only, at any point after publication; Posting the Accepted Manuscript on institutional repositories and/or subject repositories, subject to an embargo of 12 months after publication (Green Open Access); Posting the Accepted Manuscript on academic social networks or social media, subject to an embargo of 24 months after publication (Green Open Access)"
For more info see: https://www.inderscience.com/mobile/inauthors/index.php?pid=74
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